For those of you who are in the world of ethical fashion and sustainable living, if you haven’t heard of Kate Gumbrell yet then stop what you are doing and go check her out now. For those of you who don’t live and breathe it, but you are keen to learn more without being overwhelmed, then this girl is also the one for you.
Kate is a sustainable fashion advocate along with being an eco blogger and an eco wedding planner. Based in my homeland in little old New Zealand, Kate is paving the way for people to easily understand and implement sustainable living.
On top of this, she’s also one of the sweetest people I know. I mean, today is my first day of work and I woke up to a message from her this morning saying Goodluck. If that isn’t someone you want to surround yourself with and learn more from, then I don’t know who is. With all that said, I’ve been lucky enough to get an interview with Kate for the Movers & Shakers segment, I hope you enjoy it as much as I’ve enjoyed connecting with her.
WHAT MADE YOU START ETHICALLY KATE?
After over 2 years of committing to ethical fashion and living an eco lifestyle, I have been asked so many questions by people wanting tips on how I do it. Rather than sending them the odd link here and there, I wanted to create a space for all my friends and followers to go to whenever they needed (but still ask me questions in person of course!). Ethically Kate will be a place of inspiration, GREAT fashion, and an eye opener to the eco living/fashion world. P.S. It’s still in the making haha.
HOW DID YOU FIRST COME ACROSS ETHICAL FASHION/CONSCIOUS CONSUMERISM?
I’ve always been a lover of the earth and its people. I grew up in a family who have always been conscious of waste, looking after our global community and giving more than you take. We lived in Mongolia when I was 10 for 2 years, and this was a huge life changing experience and an eye opener to the world which meant my heart was always hurting for other people. But it was The True Cost movie that totally flipped me. I watched it with a group of friends one evening, decided if I was going to do this thing, I would do it with all my heart, mind, body, soul (I have a tattoo about this ideology…), and I have never looked back!
WHAT HAS BEEN THE MOST CHALLENGING PART SINCE YOU BEGAN EMBRACING THIS TYPE OF LIFESTYLE?
There are SO many challenging parts. The biggest is trying not to alienate my friends and family. When something is so deeply embedded in your being, it is hard not to come out swinging when someone disagrees or doesn’t understand your lifestyle choices- or that their choices have effects they are unaware of. It’s also hard not to take things personally when you see your friends and family choosing to stay ignorant.
WHAT OR WHO INSPIRES YOU TO DO WHAT YOU DO ON A DAILY BASIS?
Timothy freaking Hall. Although I may be biased (he is my husband after all), he is the guy who makes this all happen. Whenever I have a mad crazy idea, or swing the other way and feel like giving up, he’s the one who gives me a reality check and pushes me back out there. Nothing I say is ever too strange for him, and he even puts up with my zero waste cooking and consistent pestering of workers in restaurants, banks, stores (Do you recycle? No straw please. Is this organic? Do you know who made your clothes?). He makes me dinner when I am too busy with working in the evenings, and he spreads the eco word in his work place and everywhere he goes. Sustainably Chic is also a huge inspiration of mine. Her work is amazing, and she has changed the fashion industry in a big way!
BEST PIECE OF ADVICE YOU HAVE EVER RECEIVED?
Fake it ’til you make it.
DO YOU HAVE A MORNING ROUTINE? IF SO WHAT IS IT YOU DO TO SET YOURSELF UP FOR THE DAY AHEAD?
My morning routine is not my preferred one… but here goes. It starts at 5:30am when I get out of bed and chuck on some World Organic makeup. I carpool to work with Tim, and then eat my handmade, zero waste granola with easyo (nearly handmade!) yoghurt, and peaches. I am not a coffee drinker- never have been, never will be, but a cuppa tea goes down well in the morning too. My ideal morning routine would also involve a run, breakfast with my handraised pet bird, and a read of the Good magazine.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE SUCCESS?
Peace. I know I have succeeded if I feel utter peace and achievement. I have succeeded if I have made someone else’s life even a tiny bit better.
WHAT’S ONE PIECE OF ADVICE THAT YOU WOULD GIVE TO OTHERS STARTING OUT?
Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask questions- you have nothing to lose, but SO much to gain.
ONE BOOK EVERYONE SHOULD READ? WHY?
The Great Gatsby. It’s magical, well written, and will make you think about life. Plus it also takes you to the roaring 20s- and who wouldn’t want to visit there?
ARE THERE ANY OTHER MOVERS & SHAKERS OUT THERE IN YOUR WORLD THAT YOU THINK WE SHOULD ALL KNOW ABOUT?
The biggest movers and shakers who I think are far too underrated are the lovely Walk Sew Good girls. They are walking across South East Asia (for a YEAR!) promoting positive fashion brands and stories. They are in their last 3 months of walking, and have shared some amazing stories and brands with the world! Talk about walking the walk not just talking the talk.
& there you have it. If you want to learn more from Kate or follow along on her journey then you can follow her on her socials via Instagram.